Friday, January 21, 2011

The Incredible Swim Flume - Tenerife Top Training

This is video I took from the TriDynamic Tenerife Triathlon Camp I am doing this week, with Joe Friel and TriDynamic. The swimmer in this video is Martin Boddie of the UK. This swim flume is the only one of its kind open to the public, in the world! It is located in Tenerife, in the Canary Islands. All the campers will get to use this system individually, for analysis of their swim.

A swim flume is basically a tank which acts as a swimming treadmill, but also like a wind tunnel for swimming. There are three different camera angles filming at the same time, and a viewing window to the left of the swimmer, (you can see Joe Friel in the window). Martin is wearing a belt with lights on the side that shine into the cameras thru the side viewing window. The cameras pick up the light to determine the rotational frequency of the swimmer, giving cadence.

The data and video are collected and recorded together, which is shown in the screen projection, so the coaches can review the data in its entirety, and in unison, with actual speed and cadence data. This is the most impressive and comprehensive swim analysis system I've ever seen. The big metal structure can also allow us to attach a VO2 system to the swimmers, and slide it out on top of them.

The system will go up to 2.5 m/sec, or 40 secs per 100 meters! I am anxious to see more of this in action, and see the things we can determine about the athletes' swim strokes here at the camp.

Coach Vance

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